When you arrange to go to Copenhagen for a weekend of sightseeing and catching up with friends, the last thing you expect to find yourself doing is heading to a farm to watch cows jump. However, we had been reliably informed by our friend that the Sunday of our stay was the day that the cows across the country were released from their barns for the summer. They get so excited that they leap about and generally have a great time, whilst Danish families in the area watch and enjoy free dairy produce from the farm. So after a day of seeing the sights in central Copenhagen, we headed out into the countryside to watch cows the following day.
I have to admit that it wasn’t number one on my list of things to do, and that the round trip did take a couple of hours so if you are limited for time, I wouldn’t necessarily recommend the excursion. However, we went and we saw the cows and… they weren’t quite as thrilled as we’d hoped. A couple jumped, and they raced around the field a bit, but it was a bit of an anti-climax, especially for someone who has grown up in the country and was once part of young farmers! In fact my favourite cow was the one who came outside, looked at the grass, looked at all of the people watching, then promptly turned back round and went back into the barn!
I was quite surprised by the number of people who had turned out to see the cows, but a lot of them were families and I can see how it would make a fun day out with small children. Effectively the whole farm was opened to the public so you could walk through the cow barns, see where the milking took place, climb on a tractor and play in the hay bales. There were also some small cow shaped bouncy-hoppers for small children. In addition to this there was milk, yoghurt and cheese available to try. It was certainly a different way to spend a Sunday morning, and it was nice to have taken part in something which seems to have become a Danish tradition.
Once we were back in Copenhagen, we decided to do something completely different (and more typically touristy) and headed to the Tivoli Gardens. Tivoli Gardens is the second-oldest operating amusement park in the world, and first opened in 1843. As someone who is not a fan of theme parks, I wasn’t sure if I’d enjoy it but still wanted to walk around inside. James persuaded me to buy a ticket which included all rides rather than just an entry pass, and in the end I was pleased he did. We certainly got our money’s worth!
I hate rollercoasters, and generally anything that goes too fast or too high puts me off completely, however I’d already noted some gentler rides (including boats on the lake!) so we started off with those. I didn’t have many amusement park experiences to compare Tivoli Gardens to, but James was impressed. We didn’t have to queue for any of the rides (although in peak season it would probably be a different matter), there was a good selection of rides which included all levels of scariness, and even if you didn’t want to go on rides the gardens were quite pretty, and there were quite a few nice cafes where you could sit and enjoy some cake.
Regular performances take place throughout the summer months, and whilst we were there a gymnastics competition was being held on the main stage. It was a really nice way of breaking up our time on the rides by going to see some of the competition performances. It also provided us with something to do whilst I worked my way through the biggest piece of candy floss I’ve ever had! We had expected it to be normal size, but it just seemed to keep growing! Given the wind I felt the need to support it, and was amazed that I managed not to get any in my hair.
We were spoilt for choice for places to go for dinner – from a pirate ship to traditional Danish restaurants, there were plenty of different restaurants within the park. In the end we chose Asian food and headed over to the newly opened Kiin Kiin Piin To, which was located inside a lovely pagoda which looked beautiful when lit up at night.
Unless you’ve been there since it opens in the morning, I would recommend staying in Tivoli Gardens until after dark as it looks really beautiful lit up, and some of the taller rides give great views across the park and the city. By the time we left there was only one ride that James had been on that I hadn’t, and even though I didn’t enjoy some of the ones I tried, I was pleased that I had given them a go. Whatever your opinions of theme parks, I would urge you to still visit Tivoli Gardens as there is so much more to it than scary rides!